Nick Palmer writes: This is a collective interim reply to your comments, as I’m completely overwhelmed by the response. Approaching 400 emails have come in, 98% of them urging me to put my name forward for consideration, and in many cases promising practical help – canvassing, leafleting, donating – to give us a real chance.
I’ve been responding individually, but the new emails are outpacing the speed of replies, so here’s an interim answer for everyone:
1. Yes, I’ll put my name forward!
2. I’m aware of several excellent other candidates applying. In particular, my old friend Greg Marshall, a prominent Beeston councillor with great credentials, has put his name in. I will be glad to support any of them if they’re selected. I’ll write more when we know which of us it is.
3. The decision is expected Thursday night or Friday morning. In view of the short timescale, the decision will be made by the national and regional party, and what we are doing here is making sure that they have a good choice.
If you simply replied “yes, please go for it!” (or in half a dozen cases,“no, don’t!”), thank you very much for the input, whichever choice you indicated. Please forgive me for not writing back to say that individually.
If you asked a question or raised an issue to discuss, I will reply, but please give me a few days to work through the list so that I can reply substantively – one of the differences from some politicians which I try to ensure is that everyone who asks a civil question gets a civil, personal, thoughtful answer, but hundreds of thoughtful answers don’t write themselves instantly!